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Experimental Film Exposures From the California Wilderness

San Francisco-based photographer Jason Corning shares a selection of 35mm film photographs made to capture a feeling of time

Experimental Film Exposures From the California Wilderness

Author

Jason Corning

Photographer

Jason Corning

Camera

Pentax K1000

Film

Kodak Portra 160

https://www.fieldmag.com/articles/jason-corning-experimential-35mm-film

The following collection of images were made by Jason Corning over the span of one year by experimenting with double exposures, long exposures, or a combination of both with the intention of capturing the feeling of a moment or place.

The world probably doesn’t need any more photographs.

Lee Friedlander showed us what naked bodies look like. So we can probably stop taking photos of naked bodies now.  

Steve McCurry showed us what people in other countries look like, so we can probably stop taking photos of people in other countries now.

Ansel Adams showed us what Yosemite looks like.  So we can probably stop taking photos of Yosemite now.  

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Let us calm Edward Abbey’s anxiously spinning corpse and leave all iPhones, selfie sticks, Polaroids, DSLRs with ambitious telephoto lenses, and large format film cameras in a box at the gate. What if we just walked around and looked at everything through our eyeballs?

Why would any of us waste our time with such a narcissistic pursuit—to believe that the world needs OUR photo of El Cap, and not the 2,347,897 others already taken?

With full knowledge and awareness of this stark reality I nevertheless push on, with my dented Pentax K1000, rickety tripod, sticky cable release, and four rolls of Portra 160 in tow.

"I came here to take some photos, dammit, whether this world needs them or not."

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I'm driving around Yosemite Valley under a full moon at 3 A.M. listening to Springsteen’s “I’m On Fire” on repeat.

I’m driving around because I’m awake in Yosemite at 3 A.M. and it’s fucking cold. I’m awake because I can’t sleep. I can’t sleep because it’s winter in the Sierras and I didn’t bring a tent, sleeping bag, or hat. And it’s fucking cold.

I came here to take some photos, dammit, whether this world needs them or not. Because I feel weird today and I want to make some weird photos.

And that, I suppose, is what our photos are worth. As long as we’re making photos about how something or someone feels, the world does need them.

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The world doesn’t need any more damn photos of what the Grand Canyon looks like. But, if you happen to be driving past the Grand Canyon at 3 A.M. and you’re feeling a little funky, get out and take a damn photo of the Grand Canyon. Or at any time for that matter. Though, maybe try to leave the shutter open for a little while. Maybe try out some double exposures. Just Try. Anything.

Maybe the world needs one more photo of what the Grand Canyon feels like.

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Experimental Film Exposures From the California Wilderness

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Photographer

Jason Corning

Camera

Pentax K1000

Film

Kodak Portra 160

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